High demand for face masks amid bad air quality in Bay Area

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The skies throughout much of the Bay Area remain gray and smoky. 

“Just being here a couple of hours, I can feel it, it’s hard to breathe, it’s not good for me.”

Despite air that remains red or unhealthy, the streets of San Francisco are still teaming with people not wearing protective masks. 

“[I’ve] Been going to every Walgreens and CVS and they are all sold out.”

But now stores that had been out are starting to restock. 

This Cole’s Hardware on 4th Street in San Francisco just got more than 1000 N-95 masks. 

“Well now I got a bunch so hopefully I will be ok, but I would like a more permanent solution so I got an air purifier for my room.”

One woman bought 40 masks. 

“This is for my co-workers that are suffering that haven’t been able to get it yet.”

Medical professionals advise you get an N-95 respirator or better, and make sure it fits tight around your face. 

If you’re not healthy, check with your doctor before wearing one. 

Also, check with your pediatrician before putting one on your kids. 

“These were designed for healthy adults not children, however some children are grown and big and healthy and they might do just fine, so you have to use common sense, you don’t want to put this on a really small child,” said Tomas Aragon, M.D., San Francisco County Health Officer. 

Even if you’re an adult and in good health, and wear the mask tightly around your face, medical professionals advise it is no substitute for staying inside when the air is unhealthy. 

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